While we are all aware of the war in Ukraine, it can be difficult to feel the magnitude of the conflict. Even when the news cycle transitions to the next thing, there are still millions feeling the ramifications of the war in Ukraine. Our alumni, Todd Marsh, is uniquely positioned to be the Lord’s hands and feet, and to remind our community of what the Lord is doing in the midst of this tragedy.
The DC Student Experience
Todd graduated with the Denver Christian class of 1988. Growing up in a Christian home and school environment helped prepare Todd for his future.
“Denver Christian’s foundation for learning the bible prepares you in ways you can’t put in the words and understand right away.”
Todd reflects on a trip with the DC Chamber Singers to Germany in 1987. While preparing for the trip, the DC Singers/band director reiterated the importance of practicing for rooms with better acoustics. Not until the group stood in cathedrals could they grasp what he meant. While students might not immediately see what God is doing through their education, God is at work. “It really does set you up for an expectation of succeeding and of loving the Lord and that in the bigger picture. The Lord is what is most important.”
Todd’s Alumni Story
After graduating from Denver Christian, Todd graduated from Metro State University in Speech Communications. For many years, Todd worked in management as an IT Specialist. In 1999, Todd woke up with a horrendous headache that morphed into years of unexplained headaches and migraines. Despite many years of pain, Todd says that he is grateful for this part of his journey. It renewed his relationship with the Lord and reliance on God’s strength.
“God has only recently revealed to me that we are all a sum of our experiences, and they are used for his glory. I am equipped to help others navigate through tough times in a way that I absolutely couldn’t do without his help. His grace and preparation has led me to bless others with the resources and skills that I now have is an honor only given to me by The Lord!”
Years later, Todd met his (now) wife, Svitlana. The Ukranian church immediately had an impact on Todd. He comments, “You don’t need to speak the same language to be overwhelmed by their love for the Lord.” After several visits, Todd and Svitlana were married in Ukraine and the US. They live in Colorado with their children, Evan (10) and Vera (4).
Family in Ukraine
In 2018, Svitlana’s parents applied to move to the US as religious refugees. Once the war broke out in Ukraine earlier this year, they knew that they needed to try to bring Svitlana’s sister-in-law, and niece to the US as well. (Svitlana’s brother is of fighting age and not allowed to leave the country.) Svitlana’s family in Ukraine face constant danger and have slept in bomb shelters regularly. Sasha and Kamilla took a long train ride to Warsaw, flew to Tijuana. They finally crossed the American border recently. Telling Svitlana’s parents that Sasha and Kamilla were on American soil was one of the most powerful moments of Todd’s life. After getting the news, Todd put on a shirt saying, “FREEDOM.” He ran downstairs with the news. Her parents fell to their knees, thanking the Lord for His mercy and faithfulness.
A reminder of God’s work
This is by no means the end of the Marsh-Yushchenko family’s journey. They continue to support their remaining family, friends, and church community in Ukraine. Todd and Svitlana pray that their story can serve as a reminder of God’s faithfulness. They want remind us that anyone can be God’s hands and feet. We just need to open ourselves up to the world around us.
“There are more people that you come into contact with who are directly affected specifically from Ukraine every single day. You just don’t know it. You don’t realize. Ukrainians are proud, resilient people. God is using the Ukrainian people to show the world what he is doing. He is bringing them together in a united way that we could have never seen coming.” ~Todd Marsh
Follow the Marsh-Yushchenko Family’s Journey
To follow the Marsh-Yushchenko’s family’s journey throughout this situation, check out their GoFundMe page which Todd keeps regularly updated. Todd and Svitlana are not only providing aid to their family but to their friends and community in Ukraine. These funds stock food banks, resupply bomb shelters, help assist orphaned children and arrange transportation to help evacuate displaced Ukrainians. We continue to pray for peace in Ukraine and for provision for those in need. May God show each of us how to be His hands and feet in the world, We pray that each of our alumni may is open to His calling!
Related Story: Read our recent blog about the fundraising effort led by one of our high school students!